Chateau d'Anet, as can be seen in Thunderball's pre-title sequence


In the centre of France lies the wonderful city of Paris. With the river Seine as its artery, Paris really is the heart of modern Europe. It is the city of love, art and fashion. Adored by love birds, mentioned in millions of poems and songs, and a great inspiration to every artist, Paris has a lot to offer. The city is accessible by car, train or airplane and has a fine metro system that brings you everywhere within minutes.

Paris has been vividly described by Ian Fleming in his short story “From a view to a kill”. Bond hates it; “The tourists ripped the heart out of the city, and he never enjoyed a single happy day in Paris since the Second World War” Whenever in Paris, Bond always stays at the same hotel, Hotel Terminus Nord, near the train station Gare du Nord. He would have lunch in Cafe de la Paix, la Rotonde or Dome, because he liked the food there and he could spend quite some time observing people. Because Bond’s character has been much based on Fleming himself, one can assume Fleming wasn’t very fond of Paris.
The ring road around Paris is called the Peripherique and on the west side you will find an exit that leads to the A13 highway, going to Rouen and Le Havre. After about 45 kilometres you will pass a town called Mantes-la-Jolie, with an accompanying exit. Leave the highway at this exit, and keep following the signs directing to a town called Dreux. This road leads you through very small villages and after 25 kilometres you will ride through the little town of Anet. The main road guides you past a building you will instantly recognize, Château d’Anet. Here the exciting pre-title sequence for ‘Thunderball was filmed, back in 1965.
Inside Paris you can easily track down the Renault car chase route from A View To A Kill (1985)
Around Paris, several chateaus were used for different Bond films
In 1979 For Your Eyes Only was supposed to be made, but after the immense success of films like ‘Star Wars’ and ‘Close Encounters Of The Third Kind’, EON decided the time was right to launch James Bond into space. In Moonraker, the first Anglo-French co-production, 007 investigates the mysterious disappearance of a Moonraker Space Shuttle. The trail leads him to California USA, where he visits the owner and builder of the shuttle, Hugo Drax. Being flown there by Drax’ personal assistant Corinne Dufour, Bond has an excellent aerial view of the magnificent estate. This estate is in fact situated south of Paris, and is called ‘Vaux-le-Vicomte’. The château was built in the period 1657-1661, for Nicolas Fouquet, minister of finance for King Louis XIV. Designed by Louis Le Vau, Charles Le Brun and the well-known garden designer André Le Notre, the château became the model for the famous château Versailles.


This and much more can be found in the chapter 'La Vie en Rose' in ON THE TRACKS OF 007

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